One of the most visible, and perhaps even iconic, features of a super energy-efficient home is the heat recovery ventilator (HRV). These devices remove stale air from the home and replace it with pre-heated fresh air from outside. The result is better indoor air quality and lower energy use than in standard homes.
The HRV itself is fairly simple: an airtight box with a heat exchange core that transfers heat from the indoor air to outside air as it passes through the box. The box also contains two small fans to move the air. All the points below apply equally to HRVs and their close cousins, energy recovery ventilators (ERVs).
Read more from this first installment of a two-part series on HRVs based on training developed by Bruce Manclark and Dan Wildenhaus of CLEAResult. Part 2 covers integrating HRVs with forced air heating and cooling systems.